End of life charity, Marie Curie, is calling on people across Newton Aycliffe to step into spring next month by completing a daily 10,000 step challenge to show support for those impacted by death, dying and bereavement.
Marie Curie’s flagship fundraiser the Great Daffodil Appeal – which is reaching its 35th anniversary next month – has, for the first time, had to cancel all of their iconic public collections for the campaign. The charity is facing a potential loss of over £3 million due to this, but is encouraging the people of Newton Aycliffe to support in a variety of creative ways.
One way the charity is hoping their supporters will back the campaign is by donning their trainers, getting out in the great outdoors every day and walking 10,000 steps. The Great Daffodil Appeal is the largest fundraising campaign in the hospice sector and, since it began in 1986, the money raised has helped Marie Curie run its essential frontline services providing care and support to people with terminal illnesses and their families across the UK.
The last 12 months have been extremely difficult, as key fundraising events have been cancelled and all of Marie Curie’s charity shops have had to close. Despite the cancelled public collections, the charity is calling on the public to dig deep and donate online, where they can also order their iconic daffodil pins too.
All donations from the Great Daffodil Appeal will ensure that Marie Curie Nurses, doctors and hospice staff can continue working on the frontline throughout the pandemic caring for people at end of life in people’s homes throughout County Durham. Last year, the charity saw a 16.5% rise in the number of people they cared for at end of life, compared to 2019 and their support line saw a 20% increase in calls too.
Carl Searle, Community Fundraiser, said: “The Great Daffodil Appeal is vitally important to us. Having been held every March for over three decades, this is the first time we’ve had to cancel all of our public collections. This is a huge blow as each volunteer would raise on average £80 from a collection shift: enough to pay for the equivalent of four hours of nursing care. The campaign would normally bring together millions of people across the country to volunteer, fundraise, donate and wear a daffodil and we’re still encouraging people to do this in any way they can in a safe manner.
“Around 300 people a day already miss out on the end of life support they need and we expect this figure to rise as a result of the pandemic, combined with usual winter pressures associated with seasonal flu and the backlog of people who have missed diagnoses.
“In these unprecedented times we need peoples’ support now more than ever. Volunteers play a huge role in helping us raise money, continue our vital work across Newton Aycliffe and ensure Marie Curie Nurses can be there to provide end of life care when people need it.”
During the Great Daffodil Appeal the first annual National Day of Reflection will take place. Since the first lockdown began in 2020, millions of people have been bereaved. Join Marie Curie on 23 March, the first anniversary of UK lockdown, for a day to reflect and commemorate this tragic loss of life.
For more information on how to fundraise, donate or set up a virtual collection, visit: www.mariecurie.org.uk/daffodil